Friday, May 21, 2010

Peterson Directed Handwriting – TOS review

image I am always looking for ways to improve my kids handwriting.  My son is 11 and has very small handwriting.  He has pretty handwriting when he tries but it is just too little.   At least his printing is good.  We haven’t quite mastered cursive.  Bella has okay printing but is eager to learn cursive.

So, I was excited to learn I would be receiving, levels picked just for my family, of Peterson Directed handwriting.    The customer service of this company is awesome.  Each family got a personal online meeting with Rand Nelson, VP of Marketing for Peterson Directed Handwriting.  He was great about asking about each of my children’s habits and ability.  My son is left handed and he had great tips for helping his handwriting immediately, even before starting this program.  We decided that he should start with Step 4 and my daughter should begin with the First level.   He also provided me with Level 3 to use.  These were PDF files of E-books and were available immediately for me to use.  He was very generous with the materials.   Each Level is available for $19.95

I had a hard time finding out how to start the program.  If I hadn’t talked to to different crew members about how they were doing this program, I would have just had my kids start with the worksheets.  There was no real instructions which I found difficult.   I did learn from others that we should start with finger/arm movements and not even use a pencil at first.    Big movements to master handwriting skills is something this program emphasizes.

We have done several lessons which helped the kids learn basic strokes for cursive.   Griffin has had a hard time changing the angle of his paper.  Even though I keep telling him this  would help improve his writing and help alleviate hand cramps, he so far, has not been able (or willing)  to continue to do this. 

Things We like:

*I only have to print off the pages we need.

* I can reprint, and reprint and reprint as much as needed.  I am even able to use with multiple children at no additional charge.   It doesn’t matter if you have 2 kids like me, or 19 and counting.   

* Colorful, multi-level versions of print and cursive.

*  Cost is affordable. 

*  Amazing website with TONS of information.  I highly recommend checking it out. 

Things we Didn’t like:

  *  Color version.  This makes printing more expensive but after the initial lessons, I think you could switch to black and white.

*  No real lesson plan with the E-books.  Directions are not clear. 

Peterson Directed Handwriting offers homeschool kits that have lesson plans in a teacher handbook.  They also have  student text, and an Animated Letter Cards cd-rom.   Remember, I told you he gave me pointers to helping my lefty position his paper correctly?  They offer a position guide to help all student’s angle their paper correctly for better control.

Wanna see the program for yourself?   The website allows you to see the entire contents of the E-Workbooks at no cost.   You cannot print anything from here but it is a great way to see if you think this would work for your kids. 

I recommend seeing what the other crew members have to say about this program by visiting the crew website

Please note that I received free E-books from Peterson Directed Handwriting in exchange for my honest opinion in this review.  No other compensation was provided.  Thank you to TOS and Peterson Handwriting for this opportunity.   

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